By CATHERINE THORBECKE, ABC News
(WASHINGTON) — The U.S. Department of Commerce announced Monday that 11 Chinese companies would be blacklisted for alleged human rights violations.
The companies are implicated in abuses associated with the People Republic of China’s campaign of “repression, mass arbitrary detention, forced labor, involuntary collection of biometric data, and genetic analyses targeted at Muslim minority groups from the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region,” the Commerce Department said in a statement.
The blacklisting means the companies will not be able to purchase U.S. equipment or technology. The companies range from tech firms to apparel makers and even hair product suppliers.
“Beijing actively promotes the reprehensible practice of forced labor and abusive DNA collection and analysis schemes to repress its citizens,” Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross said in a statement. “This action will ensure that our goods and technologies are not used in the Chinese Communist Party’s despicable offensive against defenseless Muslim minority populations.”
Nine of the companies named by the Commerce Department — including Changii Esquel Textile Company, Hefei Bitland Information Technology Company and Tanyuan Technology Company — were blacklisted in connection with the practice of forced labor involving Uyghurs and other Muslim minority groups.
The other two companies were hit with the sanctions in connection with conducting genetic analyses used to further the repression of Uyghurs and other Muslim minority groups, the Commerce Department said.
The action from the U.S. government comes after a March 2020 report from the think tank Australian Strategic Policy Institute, which accused major U.S. companies, including Apple and Nike, of using Uyghur labor in their supply chains.
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